Release of Britons ends months of suffering, says UK foreign secretary


Foreign Secretary James Cleverly has welcomed the safe return of five British nationals who were being held as prisoners of war by Russian-backed forces in eastern Ukraine.

“This brings to an end many months of uncertainty and suffering, including the threat of the death penalty, for them and their families, at the hands of Russia,” he said.

He said that was “tragically” not the case for British man Paul Urey who was captured by Russian-backed separatists in Ukraine, and died in detention in July.

“I would like to express my gratitude to President Zelensky and his team for their efforts to secure their release, and to HRH Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia, Mohammed bin Salman and his team, for their assistance.”

He reiterated a call on Russia to comply with international humanitarian law and not exploit prisoners of war and civilian detainees for political